Operation: F.R.U.I.T-C.A.K.E.D.
Faulty. Rhyming. Ultimately. Insures. Telling. Christmas-y. Anecdote. Kids. Earnestly. Deserve.


The Delightful Children
From Down the Lane
Liked fruitcakes a lot…

But Sector V,
Who lived just up the block in their treehouse
Did NOT.

Sector V hated fruitcakes! Every stinking fruit flavor!
No need to ask why, for they had a list down on paper.
Reason number one: the fruit bits were too chunky
Reason number two: the smell was quite funky.
But they'd agree the reason that made the list topping
Was the fact their fruitcake tasted of dog dropping.

But,
Whatever the reason,
Be it smell or taste,
They stood there on Christmas Eve, dreading their fate,
They hung from their branch, Hoagie working a scanner
Reading for signals from the Delightful manor.
For they knew the Delightfuls in their home beyond
Were busy now, a foul deed being spawned.

"And they're baking their cake!" they snarled with a sneer.
"Their party's tomorrow! It's so very near!"
Then they moaned, with their feet pacing the flight deck,
"We MUST find a way to keep their cake out of our stomachs!"
For, tomorrow, they knew…

…Those Delightful ol' chaps
Would wake bright and early. They'd spring their foul traps!
And then! Oh, the straps! Oh, the straps! Straps! Straps! Straps!
They always tied them up with the STRAPS! STRAPS! STRAPS! STRAPS!

Then the Delightfuls, cruel and mean, would force them to eat.
They'd make them eat! They'd make them eat!
They'd make them EAT! EAT! EAT! EAT!

They'd start with carrot stacker, baked with banana bread
They'd top it with lemon-icing, which they swore contained lead.
Then come in the next course, kicking off their sick brunch,
A cake lined to the brim with awful mint-berry crunch!
Then they'd finally bring in the cake with raisin-mash-mite,
Which was something Sector V did not eat, not even one bite!

And THEN
They'd do something the five liked least of all!
All the Delightfuls, both the short and the tall,
Would stand close together, ready for boasting
They'd stand hand-in-hand. And those Delightfuls would start gloating!

They'd gloat! And they'd gloat!
And they'd GLOAT! GLOAT! GLOAT! GLOAT!
And the more Sector V thought of the Delightful-Cake-Gloats
The more Sector V thought, "No way their cake is getting down OUR throats!"
"Why for three-and-a-half years we've put up with it now!
We MUST keep their cake out of our stomachs!

…But HOW?"

Then they thunk, and they thunk.
Then they thunk some more.
Why they thunk, and they thunk

Even Wally thunk, thunk, and thunk.

Then…he got an idea!
A great idea!
That Wally
Got a wonderful, terrific idea!

"I know exactly what it is that we will do,
We'll gather up junk Delightfuls are partial to!"

"Like books?"

"And cards?"

"And candy?"

"And toys?"

"Yea, everything a Delightful enjoys!
Then we'll dig this ginormous pit,
And have the stuff lead straight to it
They'll fall in, and we'll bury 'em in
And we'll never have to see their faces again!"

"…That seems a bit gruesome, dont'cha think?"

"Well, you got any better ideas, mister wise-guy?"

"I know just what to do!" Kuki suggested from her mat.
And then she made a quick elfish sash and a hat
And she chuckled and clucked, "We won't go as our selves!
"With these cute outfits, we'll look just like Santa's elves!"

"All we'd need is a reindeer…"
Sector V looked around.
But since reindeer are scarce, there were none to be found.
Did that stop the young kids…?
"No!" Sector V simply said,
"If we can't find a reindeer, we'll make one instead!"
So they pulled out a whistle, all shiny and chrome
They gave a great "TWEET" calling an old friend home.

Who did they call? Well, there was only one,
Who had the drive, the moxy, to get such a job done.

They called…

Bradley the Robot-Skunk Thing,
Son of Numbuh Three and Two
For if you ever met him,
You'd cover your nose and cry "pew!"

One night Bradley took on a mission,
One that required tact and skill
Sadly for poor little Bradley,
He almost became roadkill.

Then in the hospital wing,
Hoagie promised this,
"Kuki, with my mind so bright,
I'll make the first skunk cyborg tonight!"

Then Bradley became super awesome,
And everyone did agree,
That Bradley, the Robot-Skunk Thing,
Would go down in pseudoscience
His-tor-y!

Then
They loaded some bags
Which they loaded quite gladly
On a 2x4 sleigh
Where they had hitched up lil Bradley.

Then Sector V said, "Mush!"
And the sleigh did cruise
Towards the place where the Delightfuls
Lay soundly a-snooze.

All their windows were dark. Frozen ice the house wore.
All the Delightfuls dreamed dull dreams without so much as a snore,
When Sector V came up inching towards their door.

"You're up, Numbuh One," the lil Abby elf did rasp
And Nigel glided to the roof, a ladder in his grasp.
They followed his lead, climbing up, suppressing shivers
Then they decided who'd go in first with a game of Rock-Paper-Scissors.

They then slid down the chimney. A rather tight squeeze.
But if the fat man could do it, so could Sector V.
They got stuck only once, for a second or two
Then they stuck their heads out of the fireplace flue
Where the little Delightful stockings all hung in a row.
"Check those stockings," Nigel said, "All the cake must go!"

Then he crouched and he crept, the sneaky little Britain,
There was no time for delay, he was here on a mission.
His team slithered around, careful to tamper with what looked newish
Then suddenly Hoagie spoke up, "Hey guys, have I mentioned I'm Jewish?"

"Uh, does that have anything to do with what we're doing now?"

"No, but I thought it wouldn't hurt to share a little bit about myself."

Upstairs, the Delightfuls were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of math tests danced in their heads.
And in the next room, all fit in his cap,
Father had just settled down for a long winter's nap.

When out from the lawn there arose such a clatter,
He grudgingly rose from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the door he slouched like a slug,
Grumpily turning the knob, almost tripping on the rug.

And then, in a twinkling, he heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As he drew in his head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney …mangy elves came with a bound?

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
It shook as the smoke encircled his head like a wreath.
His tired, broad face crinkled ever so slightly,
Intruders in his home he would not take lightly!

Sector V, meanwhile, cried, "For heaven's sake!
We've found ribbons, we've found toys, we've even found roller skates
Yet where are they hiding that cruddy fruitcake?"

The children began to search under the pine coated tree,
When they suddenly felt the heat go up a single degree.
They turned around fast, and then they saw him!
Big Bad Father him. Oh, things just got grim.

Sector V had been caught by the terrible Father
Who'd gotten out of bed to see what was the bother.

Sleepy eyes blinked and said, "Elves, how dare you!
How dare you try to rob me blind, HOW DARE YOU!"

But, suddenly, Kuki approached Father, appearing quite lucid
That girl, she must be brave! That girl, she must be stupid!
"We're not robbing you mister," she lied out right
"There's a gift under this tree that's wrapped up just too tight.
"So we're here to un-tight it, I assure you it's true!
"We're certainly not stealing fruitcakes, you believe me, don't you?"

And her fibbed fooled the man, the sleepy old man
Kuki's ploy had worked, she had salvaged their plan!
Father patted her head, too tired to care
Then give a mighty yawn, sinking down in his chair.
They waited quietly for the evening of his breath
Then quickly skedaddled, avoiding hot death.

They moved to other rooms, one goal in mind
They moved to other places, determined to find
That disgusting fruitcake the Delightfuls had stored
And along the way, there were plenty of things ignored.

They ignored…

Twelve Tie-land ties
Eleven assassin undies
Ten tanks of tapioca
Nine jars of toenails
Eight maids a-sweepin'
Seven butlers snarking
Six chicken nuggets
Five cups of Joe
Four missing flavors
Three rainbow monkeys
Two Yipper cards
Until they finally found the fruitcake in the pantry.

They took that carrot stacker, baked with banana bread
They swiped its lemon-icing, which they swore contained lead.
Then the next item they stole in a hurried little bunch
Was a cake lined to the brim with awful mint-berry crunch.
Why, they even stole the cake with raisin-mash-mite,
Sector V left nothing behind, not a solitary bite!

Then they stuffed all the food up the chimney with glee.
"Let's get out of here," Wally said, "Y'know, make like a tree!"

"Leave. The phrase is, 'make like a tree and leave'."

"Don't care!"

It was quarter past dawn...
Delightfuls, still a-bed
Delightfuls, still a-snooze
When they packed up their sled,
Packed it up with the cake! The dessert! The bread!
The raisins! And the mint! The stacker! The icing lead!

In their snowy backyard, right outside the manor,
They ventured outside to find a good hammer!
They smashed the bags, they smashed the cake
They destroyed every bit, leaving nothing in the wake!
It was a time for celebration, it was a time for cheer
They would not be force fed fruitcake this year!

"Pooh-pooh to those dorks!" they couldn't help but comment.
"They'll find out soon that they're done making us vomit!
"They're just waking up! They'll lose their cool and their grace!
"Their mouths will go 'BWHA?' and they'll be frozen in place
"While we finally go all like, 'HA HA! IN YOUR FACE'!"

"That's a noise," grinned the five,
"That we simply must hear!"
So they paused. And each put a hand to their ear.
And they did hear a sound rising over the snow.
It started in low. Then it started to grow...

But the sound wasn't sad!
Why, this sound sounded merry!
It couldn't be so!
But it WAS merry! VERY!

They stared forth at the Delightfuls!
Sector V popped their eyes!
Then they shook!
What they saw was a shocking surprise!

Every single Delightful, the tall and the small,
Were gloating! Without any cake at all!
They HADN'T stopped their gloating from coming!
IT CAME!
Somehow or other, it came just the same!

And Sector V, suddenly becoming quite tense
Stood there dumbfounded. "T-This doesn't make sense!
W-We stole your cake and played you for twits!
We smashed, stomped, and crushed it to bits!"

The Delightfuls taunted, "You poor little saps. There was no crime
For we had you pegged for suckers the whole time!
Of fruitcake, we admit, we had more than plenty
But have you wondered why WE never ate any?"

"We fed it to you, yes, this is true
We fed it to you so we don't have to!
Father makes it every year and expects us to chew
But we HATE fruitcake too, even more-so than you!"

Sector V stood astounded.
Utterly confounded!
They had been duped, bamboozled, cheated, had
All by those sinister Delightful cads.

"Well…joke's on you!" Hoagie weakly shot back.
"We still smashed your cake, so we can't eat any-ACK!"

Sector V stepped back, shocked and frightened
For bits of cake had merged and tightened.
It was implausible, but here they stood witness
As the cake they smashed reformed in a large clump of citrus.

They shook, they shivered, they gasped, they trembled
For the pieces of cake had come alive and assembled!

The Delightfuls smirked. "Here's one last twist before the turn of the hour
For this year it is YOU our CAKE will devour!"

The monstrosity stood, very lumpy, yet proud
It was quite pleased of its affect on the small crowd.
To the outside observer, Sector V was going on the attack
But to the fruitcake monster, they looked like a mid-morning snack.

Nigel gripped his fists, then with some hesitation,
He finally called out, "Kids Next Door, BATTLE STATIONS!"

They flew into formation, like a well-oiled machine
They threw kicks, tossed punches: just like on the big screen.
But despite their efforts, it would all be for naught.
For in two minutes flat, the monster had Sector V caught.

In its clutches, they squirmed, and they started to wheeze
But the monster didn't care, it only increased its squeeze.
This is it, they lost. The end was in sight.
Sector V truly believed they had seen their last night.

And what happened then…?
Well…in the KND they say
Sector V had been saved
By a Christmas miracle that day.
There was a still in the air, then a quick flash
Then the ground rumbled in the wake of a crash.

All looked on. They looked on in awe
For they couldn't believe what they saw!

It was Bradley, their skunk! He had fled, then returned
The small creature growled, for it was a battle he yearned.
But he was not alone, not in the slightest
The Robot-Skunk Thing had proved he was the brightest.

What did he do to earn such honor you say?
Well, he brought a SCAMPER.
A SCAMPER with hamsters!
Hamsters!
Hungry, ravenous, fruitcake craving hamsters!

The fruitcake monster was suddenly swarmed by its foe
And if you peered into its eyes, you could see them conveying "oh no".

Bradley leapt a mighty leap, the skunk taking to the air
He slashed at the monster's arm, cutting through it like it was never there
Sector V was free, and the animals grinned at the beast.
You could see it in their eyes, they were ready to feast.

"No! No no," the Delightfuls wailed
The rodents continued to eat, and their faces became pale.
"This isn't happening! We will not accept this fact
That all our planning was undone by those dirty rats!"

"Look at 'em go," Hoagie shouted out loud
They way the hamsters were eating, made him a bit proud.
"Keep at it guys, keep it up until dawn
Don't stop eating until that monster is all gone!"

Gone it was, and gone it would always be
The fruitcake was done for, oh it was a sight to see!
Sector V cheered, and the Delightfuls let out a whine
It wasn't fair! They had lost the fight, all before nine!

"We'll get you Kids Next Door, you will rue this Christmas day!
Because watch out for next year, we'll make sure you all pay!"

But then Abby noticed something, and noticed it quick
"Don't look now, but those hamsters are gonna get si-"

"BLEEEGH!"

"Eww," Abby groaned, averting her eyes as hundreds of hamsters and Bradley proceeded to blow chunks all over the Delightful Children. "Man oh man, Numbuh 5 did NOT need to see dat."

"You're telling me," Hoagie agreed, feeling a small pang of pity for the five, "But you know, there's a valuable lesson to be learned here."

Nigel arched a brow. "And what might that be?"

"Never feed fruitcake to a bunch of hamsters or a half-robotic skunk."

They all shared a nod at that, then just stood there. Wondering what to do next. The Delightfuls had long since retreated back inside, no doubt to take a shower and lament on their failure. They had completed their mission, at last. Now with all the fruitcake gone, the Delightfuls wouldn't be coming to ruin their holiday by forcing them to eat the yucky cake they themselves did not want. Well, until next year, that is. But that was, like, a lifetime away.

"So, what now?"

"Let's go home, everybody!" Kuki called out to all the animals. There was a tiny earthquake as they all scurried over to her, Bradley jumping into her arms and all the hamsters vying for her attention. Kuki giggled, leading her brood away. "Now now, I have enough love for everyone! Let's go see what Santa brought you!"

"Numbuh 3's right," Nigel added, "Mission accomplished, gang. Merry Christmas and–"

"Ahem."

"And Happy Hanukkah," Nigel finished wryly as Hoagie seemed pleased. Rolling his eyes, he turned to walk off into the morning sun. "Let's go home and open presents."

"'Bout time! These stupid elf costumes are itchy," Wally complained as he scratched at his outfit. He couldn't believe he went along with it, his plan was so much more brilliant-er!

Suddenly, Wally paused in his tracks as he remembered something that had been bothering him for quite a while. "Hey guys, didja ever notice that we were kinda…rhyming every other thing we said back there?"

"Nope."

"Numbuh 5 didn't do no rhyming."

"That's just silly, Numbuh 4."

"Huh." Wally muttered, shrugging and following along with his team. "Coulda sworn we were…"


Happy Holidays, everyone.